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Judge Orders injunction in Sweet Briar College Closure

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A day full of testimony Wednesday has ended in Bedford with a judge granting a partial victory for the group of people hoping to save Sweet Briar College from closing. Supporters working to stop Sweet Briar's closure are calling this a partial victory. 

A judge in Bedford County ordered a 60 day injunction to prevent the college from shifting funds raised for its operation to its closure. Students, alumna, and donors packed the courtroom for the eight hour hearing on Amherst County's request for an injunction to stop Sweet Briar's closing and oust the board and president.

Attorneys for the group Saving Sweet Briar joined the county's attorney in making the case Wednesday.  

The county argued a secretive administration raised money to close the school that was disguised as fundraising for its future. This 60 day injunction will prevent the college from doing that.

"We will abide by that decision. We're not going to use funds for purposes we're not supposed to. But it does allow us to continue with the purpose of closing the college," said Sweet Briar College attorney Woody Fowler.

"It's a partial success but there's more work to be done to save Sweet Briar College and we will settle back first thing in the morning," said Saving Sweet Briar attorney William Hurd.

Amherst County attorney Ellen Bowyer says an expedited appeal will be filed immediately to the Virginia Supreme Court seeking further injunctions to stop the college's closure.

Saving Sweet Briar is not letting this get in the way of their efforts. They announced Wednesday that over $10 million has been raised or pledged to keep the college open.

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